Most of us don’t have money in our budget to purchase a new car every couple of years. Luckily, there's little need to sink a boatload of cash into a new vehicle when you can help your current car run smoother, longer with a few budget-friendly services. With the proper care, almost any car or truck can reach the 200,000-mile marker – or beyond! Keep reading, and we’ll clue you into the important maintenance services and repairs that can help your car get there.
Make manufacturer recommended service intervals a priority.
Make time for routine “check-ups” if you really want to keep your car in good health. Vehicle manufacturers publish recommended service intervals based on a car's make, model, and year to help you know what needs to be inspected, replaced, or rotated—and when. Regular car maintenance schedules include things like oil and filter changes, tire rotations, brake and steering system inspections, and more. Vehicle manufacturers are pros when it comes to your vehicle's particular pieces and parts. Following their guidelines can help you stay ahead of car trouble down the road.
Invest in high mileage oil changes.
Oil changes are crucial for the health of your engine, and even more so when you’ve racked up some miles on your car. High mileage oil is specially formulated to give engines with more than 75,000 miles a little extra TLC. It can help reduce oil consumption, minimize leaks, and reduce smoke and emissions. Even if your engine has less than 75,000 miles on it, talk to your local technician about a high mileage oil change. The added antioxidants, detergents, and wear/friction additives in high mileage oil can be just as beneficial to a factory fresh engine as one that's been on a cross-country trip or two.
Maintain the cooling system.
If you aren’t actively maintaining the cooling system and radiator in your vehicle, 200,000 miles is going to be a tough odometer reading to reach. Why? The system has a vital job: it keeps your engine from getting too hot or too cold. Most importantly, it prevents the engine from overheating by dissipating the heat created as your car runs. Fail to maintain this system and you could end up with major engine damage. Keep your cooling system and radiator working efficiently with regular antifreeze changes and radiator flushes per the recommended service schedule.
Care for your tires.
While tires can easily be replaced, taking good care of your current set can put off the need for new tires and improve the overall performance of your vehicle. Caring for your tires means regular tire alignments, rotations, tire pressure checks, and tread wear checks. These quick bits of maintenance can improve the handling and safety of your car, give you better fuel economy, and leave you feeling accomplished!
Don’t ignore dashboard warning lights.
Life is busy. Between school, work, social activities, and errands, sometimes it’s easier to ignore a dashboard warning light, especially when your car is driving just fine. As tempting as it can be, don’t do it! Consider a dashboard warning light your smoke detector. It’s MUCH better to face the problem when it’s just a bit of smoke than waiting until it’s a full-fledged fire. By getting your warning lights checked out promptly, you can help make sure that a small problem doesn’t turn into a major breakdown.
Trust your local auto shop.
Some people change out cars like they change out smartphones, but not you! You know your car doesn’t have an expiration date and you’re ready to help it run stronger, longer. Start with a vehicle inspection at your nearest Firestone Complete Auto Care and download your vehicle’s maintenance schedule today! We’re here to help you take care of your car so it takes care of you, to 200,000 miles and beyond!